I'm reading "The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Families" By Stephen Covey. Each week I focus on one chapter. I found last week's especially powerful: "Begin with the End in Mind." One exercise in the chapter was to develop a family mission statement. This really opened some lines of communication between my husband and me.
Too often we assume our partner knows what we want: in life, in raising our children, in day-to-day goings on. Even after 15 years, over half my life with my husband, he and I still need to communicate our wants and needs with one another.
Lately, his work has been taking up more and more of his time. And as he climbs in his career, this is expected. But I'm meeting it with some growing pains. As a military wife, the creed "Mission First" rings true for us too. It's often the unrecognized sacrifice "dependents" make. It doesn't mean that we like it, or that knowing it makes things easier. Military wives are pretty much glorified single parents. Something I admitted to my husband before we decided to have children. Again, it doesn't make things easier, and I don't like it.
But this is why communication is so important. It's almost like the less we see of one another, the more we need to communicate, and be very clear about how we communicate. This exercise from the book helped clear the air of some things that have been festering....See: his being at work or on the phone with work the majority of the time, and my single mommy-hood feelings.
Our discussion to develop our statement basically involved me being our kid's primary care giver and his preparation to financially secure our future (immediate and long term).We talked for a bit and it all boiled down to:
"I expect him to be patient and compassionate with the children and me."
Anyone that's been at home all day with little ones knows where I'm coming from). Plus, by the time he comes home (usually about 7pm) EVERYONE has had a long day and is tired.
"He expects me to be trusting and understanding with him and work."
He's said that there's no other place he'd rather be than at home with us... that if he's dealing with work, it's because he has to, not because he wants to. (I have to say though, that if I didn't complain, it'd be because I didn't care.) When I stop complaining, he should start worrying about the state of our relationship.
"We both expect our children to learn from and model our actions."
Kids are sponges. The first three years of their lives are the most crucial. If I don't show my husband respect and it isn't reciprocated, then that's what we are teaching our children: disrespect and lack of principles, morals, etc. So when we're both tired and at our whit's end, we still have to show love and support. It's money in the bank.
You can make your Family Mission Statement more of a novel. It can involve finances, child care, future aspirations... Whatever you and your family choose together. The main thing is to open a discussion that gets everyone involved and feeling valued. I wrote our mission statement down and hung it on the fridge. I'll admit that I thought it was silly, but after thinking it through and presenting it to Mike, I feel much more secure in him knowing what I expect and what he expects. I'm a big fan of writing things down, too. So as not presume that I 'll remember his expectations, or that he should remember mine.
(This weeks focus is "Put first things first.")
On the training front, since I've decided to do the Rite of Passage, so has Mike! Training together has always been one of our favorite things. Since having kids, we haven't been able to. But this is bringing us back to enjoying that together once again.
Today was a light day and we are cycling it with low-carb eating. (Which we're doing twice a week because I read that participants that did this lost 9lbs in 6 weeks as compared to 5lb loss in 6weeks by those that did not). So today was two rungs lower on the press ladder than my Hard Day, and 50-60% effort on snatches. That means I did one ladder up to 2 presses, and 4 single presses. I rolled a 4 on the dice, and did 67 snatches with the 16kg bell. I considered snatching with the 12, but decided to challenge myself. It's the first time I've snatched the 16 in a long while. It took a bit to get warmed up, but with a minute 30 to go, I felt back into my old groove... The callus on my right hand was still sore from my 10 minute snatch test (of 261 reps) though...